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Sloppy shifter


Old 06-04-2007, 11:01 PM
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Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Okanogan B.C. Can.
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Talking Sloppy shifter

I have an '89 F150 4x4 with the 5 speed OD trans, am I safe to assume that it has the M5R2 trans?
My problem is this...about 2-3 weeks ago I started having some problems getting it into reverse. Sometimes it would pop in nice like normal and other times it would not engage. This morning I went to go to work and the shifter is now having problems finding 1st, 3rd. It seems like when I try to go from 2nd to 3rd it goes over to OD. The shifter seems to be really sloppy (loose).
A friend told me to remove the boot and check where the shifter attaches to the transmission. Is this a common problem. I don't think it's a clutch or throwout bearing issue.
Any help would be cool!!!
Also does anyone know where I can find an exploded diagram of the shifter/transmission area.
Thanx Scott...
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Old 06-04-2007, 11:12 PM
Join Date: Mar 2005
Posts: 45
amazing - I started having amost the same problem today. I lost first gear, shfiter is real loose feeling. Once you find a gear, it seems to run ok.
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Old 06-05-2007, 02:37 AM
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Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: Memphis, TN 38135, USA, Earth
Posts: 5,492
Originally Posted by wanderer2007 I safe to assume that it has the M5R2 trans?
No. Check the TRANS code on the door sticker. "M" is the Mazda M5OD-R2.
Originally Posted by wanderer2007
Is this a common problem.
Yes, especially if the trans isn't maintained on schedule, or if the fluid is allowed to get low. They're known to leak from the 3 plugs for the shift rails on top.
Originally Posted by wanderer2007
...where I can find an exploded diagram of the shifter/transmission area.
Originally Posted by tomcat6
I started having amost the same problem...
Is yours a stick? If it's a column-shift, yours is totally different from pre-'92.
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Old 06-05-2007, 11:16 AM
Join Date: Mar 2005
Posts: 45
Mine is a 1995 f150 regular cab 4x4 with 5.0L, M5R2, manual shift transfer case. I am looking for all of the parts I would need to replace the shifter boot, shifter, etc. I have the ford service manaul and it doesn't shed a whole lot of light. Maybe there isn't a lot to shed. Looks like all I need is the shifter boot assembly and shifter.
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Old 06-07-2007, 11:05 PM
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Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Okanogan B.C. Can.
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Thumbs up

Yes it is an M5R2 transmission.
The problem was one of the pivoting pins was broken at the base of the shifter and a broken bushing and spacer.
I did locate a shifter rebuild kit with the exact parts I needed from THEGEARBOX.ORG for under $30.00 (which for me up here in the great white north would have been over $45.00)
I decided to MacGyver it myself for a total cost of $0.75 and 1/2 hour of my time. It's shifting like new and the repair is something that will probably last the life of the truck now.
A quick rundown of what I did...
I replaced the pivot pins with 1/4" bolts (the type that are long enough that the threads acually start at least 1" down from the head). I cut them off just shorter than 1" long so that there are no threads on them and filed down a small portion of the top of the head just enough to fit under the lip of the original cover that screws onto the top of the transmission with the 3 torx screws.
My lower plastic bushing was ok but the top one was broken so I used a piece of 3/16" flat rubber I had laying around and cut a small shape like a washer 1 1/2" diameter that would fit over the bottom section of the shifter and rest on top of the ball. (I lubed the rubber with some grease first).
After reassembly I tightend a hose clamp around the 2 pivot pins and them wrapped it with shrink tape. It aint coming apart unless I want it to.
Hope this helps any one else out there....
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Old 06-09-2007, 10:25 AM
Join Date: Mar 2005
Posts: 45
Your fix was a whole lot cheaper than mine. I sprung for the Hurst Billet Plus replacement shifter and I can't begin to describe the difference. I looked at the old shifter and decided I didn't see anything worth saving. I really thought the transmission was going bad, but it was only the shifter. Now all I have to do is wait and see what breaks next week, it's been one of those months
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